Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Pregnancy Update: Where I've Been

Well it's certainly been awhile since I gave an update! I haven't updated since 9 weeks! I'll get caught up on what has been happening since then :) I will most likely split it into a few posts, just to make it easier.



The main reason I had not been updating was due to very severe vomiting! I plan to write more about this at a later time, but I suffered from severe nausea and vomiting of pregnancy, also known as hyperemesis gravidarum, also commonly called HG. You may remember that Kate Middleton suffered from it during both her pregnancies, and it was in the news. I remember learning about it during her first pregnancy and thinking how awful it must be! I was happy to learn though, that it's relatively rare. I never, ever expected to suffer from it myself.

At it's worst, I was in fear for my baby's life, as well as my own. There were times I couldn't walk or even stand up unassisted. I lost over 20 pounds and a very significant percentage of my overall body weight. The entire thing was terrifying. My spine and ribs were extremely prominent. I felt as though I were both starving to death, and dying of dehydration. Worst of all, I felt like I was starving our baby. I did everything I could to get down my prenatals, but eventually I was told to stop, as my midwife felt that they were doing more harm than good.

My skin was so dry. My mouth was so dry. My eyes were so dry. I couldn't keep down fluids at all. I threw up countless times per day. Up to 15 or more times. It was always extremely violent and it felt like my body was trying to rid itself of poison. I couldn't help but feel like there was something very wrong with my body's reasoning. I need water to survive! My baby needs me to drink! But my body just didn't care. My entire existence revolved around constantly slowly taking small sips of ice cold water through a straw. Chewing ice chips. Just praying some of it would be absorbed. At one point, my throat began to bleed.

I didn't realize how bad off I was. I was in denial that I could have HG. After all... isn't it so rare?! I think I would have been much better off had I accepted it sooner, that this wasn't just normal morning sickness. But I was so scared. I felt that somehow admitting that's what I really was suffering from would make it worse. I've heard that some HG pregnancies never improve until delivery. I had never been more scared in my life. I felt like I could possibly lose the pregnancy over this... our sweet little baby we worked so hard to get.

When I finally began hallucinating, I knew I was bad enough that I needed to go to the hospital. I could not even walk in on my own and I needed a wheel chair. They told me I had waited too long to come in, and that in the future, I needed to come in much sooner. I won't go into detail, but I was given lots of fluids and other things (maybe vitamins?) that I cannot remember. But we got to see our little one on the ultrasound! He was moving and wiggling so much. He looked so alive. His heartbeat was perfect. His growth was perfect. Despite everything, he was okay! Somehow, he was unaffected by all of this. It seemed like a miracle.

The next few weeks were spent trying out additional combinations of anti vomiting medications, different dosages, etc. Until we found something that finally seemed to work and lessened my vomiting. The longer I was on the medication, at the right dosage, I slowly got better. I was keeping down a few glasses of water a day! I still felt so thirsty, so hungry. But I knew I was getting better.

Suffering from HG has been the most difficult and most terrifying thing I have ever done. I have never felt worse, both emotionally and physically. I cannot fully describe how low I got emotionally. There were lots of ugly feelings. Lots of crying (but few tears, since I was so dehydrated). Thankfully, my mind seems to have developed some sort of defense mechanism, and I feel as though the last few months are blurry in my memory. I've heard the same from other people, that our mind tries to protect us from the memories.

I've since learned that HG is often not taken seriously and is very under diagnosed. I was told over and over again by well meaning people, that I just had regular morning sickness. That I was making it worse by "thinking about it". That I wasn't getting enough fresh air. Not eating enough crackers. Or ginger. Or whatever worked for their normal morning sickness. It feels so isolating because no one truly understands what you are going through. People don't know about HG.

But here I sit, at almost 20 weeks. I am still on the medications. But I am not vomiting. I am eating more foods each week. I have gained back all the weight that I lost! I am getting fluids! I am one of the lucky ones that has been able to control their symptoms with medications. Within the next few weeks, I will try reducing my meds, to see if they are still necessary. I am terrified to try. For some with HG, the symptoms do resolve at some point. I'm praying that I am one of those cases. But if I cannot manage without the medication, I have been assured it is safe for me to remain on it.

I am so thankful to be feeling better! I appreciate every sip of water and every bite of food! But the best thing has been feeling our little one move :) I began feeling the first movements around 16 weeks, and they became more and more noticeable. I have lots of updates to share, and more will be coming!

Poke Count (This is the final count! We stopped PIO around 11 weeks!)
Arms: 13     Belly: 38     Ultrasounds: 8   Butt: 66

2 comments:

  1. Hi! Just found your blog (I just did transfer and currently in tww). I hope you start to feel better and congrats on your successful cycle!

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    1. Thank you so much! I am finally feeling much better :) Wishing you luck and sending positive thoughts to you for your cycle! Hoping that little one is nestling in there right now!!

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